The Student News Site of Passaic Academy for Science and Engineering

Kiara Perez, Incoming Senior


Dear Incoming Freshmen, 


Congratulations on making it to high school! I know it may seem very daunting at first but trust me, high school is a very exciting time in your life that you should enjoy to the fullest. As you go into your first year of high school, I will be going into my last so I think I have enough experience to give you some advice and insight about the new world you are about to enter. 

First, there are a few things you should probably know about our school specifically. PASE is not the usual high school. It is a very rigorous school that expects a lot from you. I stressed A LOT and there were definitely tears and breakdowns but the opportunities and community at our school outweigh all the heartache. I am so proud to say I am able to graduate high school with an associates degree and have made bonds that I plan to have for the rest of my life. I would not be able to say that if I had gone to any other high school in the area. The small size of our school allows for the students to all know each other and get to know their teachers on a much more personal level. This support is crucial when it comes to doing well in high school.

Along with a strong support system, there are a few things that are crucial to success in high school. Motivation, perseverance, and focus go a long way. PASE is a very different environment from middle school or elementary and it may seem very overwhelming. Persevering through the struggles and focusing on the long term goal of everything helped me a lot this past school year that we had online. There were many times where I was up at midnight alone doing homework wondering what was the point of all this stress and work but then I brought myself back and remembered this is all for a reason. My success is not going to come easy and neither is yours. You’re going to need a tough mentality and an even tougher heart to push through the struggles that come with high school. It may be hard, but every single struggle whether academic, social, emotional, or mental will push you to become the best version of yourself and prepare you more for the world ahead. 

At this point in the letter you probably think there are not many positives to high school but there definitely are many. The past three years, although being the hardest years of my life, have also been the best. High school is the time to go outside of your comfort zone and try as many new things as you can…well everything except drugs of course. Being a part of the track and cross country team since my freshman year has brought me the most joy and happiness. The bonds I have made with my coaches and teammates have helped me become a better and stronger person. These social aspects of high school have definitely been my favorite part. The clubs and organizations within a school make me feel welcome and part of something bigger than myself. School is more than just good grades and good test scores, it’s about the bonds and experiences you make as well.

With all this being said, I want to leave you with a few pieces of advice to remember as you venture into high school. One: Don’t stress the small things. You will fail, you will struggle, you will hurt. This is not the end and you will overcome so relax and push through. Two: make the most of every opportunity and moment you have. These few years go by faster than you know so make sure to take it all in one day at a time and don’t worry so much about the future. Lastly, number three: health is more important than school. You need sleep, food, and a stable mental state. Don’t ever give that up for a good grade or to please someone else. Even though you may think those are things you need to sacrifice for your success, they are not. In order to do well you need to be the best version of yourself and that is a healthy version of you. You got this. Go out and do great things these next four years.



Kiara Perez 

Junior at PASE

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